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Go on a Hobbiton tour from Auckland and see the Waitomo Glowworm Caves, starting with a scenic drive through New Zealand’s North Island aboard a luxury coach. You’ll be enthralled by the illuminated Glowworm Grotto during an underground boat ride on the Waitomo River. Then pose for photos in front of hobbit holes at the Hobbiton Movie Set, home to Bilbo Baggins from ‘The Hobbit’ and ‘The Lord of the Rings’ trilogies. End your tour in Rotorua or return to Auckland; picnic lunch included.


  • Full-day tour from Auckland to two of New Zealand’s most magical sites
  • Take a boat ride to the glowworm grotto to see thousands of glowworms twinkling in the darkness
  • Enjoy a delicious lunch at the Green Dragon Inn
  • Explore the Hobbiton Movie Set, where parts of The Lord of the Rings movies were filmed
  • Have you photo taken in front of a hobbit hole!

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What You Can Expect

Waitomo Caves and 'The Lord of the Rings' Hobbiton Movie Set Day Trip from Auckland

Waitomo Glowworm Caves

After hotel pickup in Auckland, enjoy a morning snack on board the luxury coach during a scenic drive through the North Island’s rolling hills and lush farmland. Listen to your guide’s commentary as you travel through the Waikato and King Country regions, and learn of the colonial history between British settlers and the Maori in Rangariri.

Upon arrival in Waitomo, you’re taken to the noteworthy Waitomo Caves for a guided tour. Descend underground into the limestone caverns to view stunning stalactites formed over centuries. Drift along the Waitomo River during a short boat ride through the Glowworm Grotto, where a breathtaking display of tiny illuminated lights glow in the darkness. Discover the mystery behind the luminescence of thousands of glowworms before enjoying a provided picnic lunch.  

Your day trip continues across the Kaimai Ranges toward Rotorua and onward to Matamata, where you’ll visit the Hobbiton Movie Set, a working sheep farm and significant filming location for The Hobbit and The Lord of the Rings movie series, all of which were filmed throughout New Zealand. Discover how the site was transformed into JRR Tolkien’s The Shire — home of Bilbo Baggins and his fellow hobbits. Have your photo taken in front of a hobbit hole and see the pond, the Mill, the Green Dragon Inn and more. 

Your full-day tour ends in Rotorua or with a return to Auckland and drop-off at your hotel.

Customer Reviews

patpowell718 United States of ... 

5 star rating: Highly Recommended February 2017

Still looking for misplaced iPhone if you went n this tour and have black backpack. Please contact me
Late hotel pickup by minivan led to not having seats together on the big, main touring bus and a rushed, late departure from Auckland. Despite the rough beginning, this was a delightful tour. The bus driver provided excellent running commentary on the local, beautiful scenery and history of New Zealand as we drove to our first destination. Our tour of Hobbiton was lead by knowledgeable, articulate guide. Despite huge crowds our group was sheparded through the set with sufficient time for viewing and photographing the sights - which were incredibly detailed...and totally fun! A refreshing drink at the Green Dragon, an iconic setting, followed by a tasty buffet lunch ended the tour. A short bus ride away was the natural wonder of the Glowworm caves. Our local Mauri guide had a great sense of humor and enjoyed pointing out all the natural wonders as we walked through the caves. The floors were tiled which made walking easy and there were handrails where necessary. The mini boat ride finale, surrounded by glow worms, was very impressive. This was definitely a day well spent!

Stephen W

5 star rating: Highly Recommended February 2017

This was a great tour, especially if you are a fan of the movies. Our driver Damien, from Great Sights, made the long drives to and from the attractions seem mych shorter. He shared some interesting facts in story form and gave a lot of insight into the background and New Zealand in general.

Phyllis M

5 star rating: Highly Recommended February 2017

Although it was a very long day the trip was great. Our driver Damian was a wealth of knowledge and told us things about NZ the entire bus ride to Hobbiton.

Susan H

5 star rating: Highly Recommended February 2017

I loved to see Hobbiton. It is amazing how detailed everything is. Lunch was good as was the ale.
The cave was interesting, but it made for a long day. If you have the time go to the caves, if not only go to Hobbiton.
The hotel pick up went well. I made the reservation before I knew where we were staying. We were within walking distance of Sky City had we known that we would have slept another 1/2 hour and walked to that pick up point.

Teresa B

5 star rating: Highly Recommended January 2017

Hobbiton is the most charming place on earth! Delicious lunch, too! Really enjoyed the Waitomo Caves part of the tour as well!! The only downer was our grouchy tour guide/driver, Brian. He even made one woman cry!


5 star rating: Highly Recommended January 2017

The trip was awesome, mostly due to the driver! He was so chatty and spoke about interesting things regarding the country, people and politics... We have enjoyed it immensely!! However if you are a big LOTR fan I would advise a separate tour as it was rushed because obviously we were on schedule. But the drivers of Intercity deserve 5 starts!


5 star rating: Highly Recommended January 2017

Fantastic! I absolutely loved Hobbiton Movie set. It was so charming and much more than I expected. Worth every penny.

Jacqueline B

5 star rating: Highly Recommended January 2017

Great tour! Our bus guide, Damien, was phenomenal and enraptured everyone with his tale-telling and share of culture of New Zealand. The only thing I would change is that the people in our group didn't necessarily keep up or went ahead so we missed some vital information.

Our guide in Hobbitown, Georgia, was great and patient.

In the caves, we could have spent more time, but still a good experience.

Michael O

5 star rating: Highly Recommended January 2017

Everything about this was terrific. The lunch was awesome and the driver was very informative.
Would highly recommend for anyone, quite a bit of bus travel but the experiences are definitely worth it.

Hannah S

5 star rating: Highly Recommended January 2017

AMAZING tour!!!!! Both the glow worms and Hobbiton were highlights of my New Zealand trip. Would HIGHLY recommend to anyone and everyone!

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